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The Carlyle Hotel, an iconic art deco-inspired New York City landmark set off Madison Avenue, is Susan Miller’s preferred place to hang out for afternoon tea. Fashion’s favourite astrologer is a regular, and her usual table is on the upper floor, where the lighting is soft and the waiters know what she likes to eat. “You know, I’d sooner leave a man than leave Manhattan,” says Miller, surveying the room’s plush red, gold, and brocade interior when we meet.
Born just around the corner at Lennox Hill Hospital, Miller is exactly the kind of dynamic and charming New Yorker that you read about in books. These traits, combined with a natural knack for witty, no bullsh*t one-liners, are doubtless what day in, day out draw flocks of readers to her cult website AstrologyZone's newsletters, e-books, and app.
To say that Miller’s a veteran of her industry would be an understatement. Without her, the horoscope as we know it today would look very different. To date, she’s authored 10 books (many of them best-sellers), and each month she contributes to eight top international fashion magazines, including Vogue Japan, China, and Germany, and W Magazine in Korea. Her app is translated into Turkish, amongst other languages.
An affinity for the zodiac came naturally to Miller: She inherited a love of the stars from her astrologist mother and a flair for business from her father, who ran an Italian speciality food store in the city. Critically ill for most of her childhood, she spent her youth restlessly bedridden, reading. “I didn’t have a TV, but my mom would bring home all the classics from the library. She never wanted me to learn astrology, but I was fascinated by it and begged and begged until she eventually agreed to teach me. ‘A little knowledge is dangerous,’ she would always say, so I set aside a good 12 years to fully grasp the complexities of the field. True astrology is based on information from NASA; it isn’t something you can learn impatiently.”
Here, in-between sips of tea (“black, iced—with lemon please”), Miller debunks common horoscope myths, breaks down how you can utilise astrology in your day to day life and even reveals a very special prediction ahead of this year's Royal wedding... See what the stars have in store for you, this year, in Susan Miller's Semaine.
Semaine: What attracted you to pursuing astrology professionally?
Susan: I always knew that I wanted to write and the passion for astrology was passed down to me. I like to see myself as the servant to my readers. I want to be their best friend and the person that they go to when they’re on the horns of a dilemma and don’t know what to do. I’m not trying to be bossy or Queen Bee. I just want to be helpful and spark creative thinking.
Semaine: What is the biggest misconception about it?
Susan: People think that astrology is predestination and don’t understand the complexity behind it. To be clear: Astrology is the mathematical study of planetary cycles, based on Mother Nature and information from NASA. My mission my whole life has been to show that my profession isn’t something silly; it has nothing to do with tarot, clairvoyance, or fortune-telling. Anything I say, you can look up in a book. It’s science-based and very transparent.
Semaine: How should people use your readings in their everyday lives?
Susan: I like to say that astrology is like a weather forecast. It might not be essential, but it’s good to know and with the knowledge of it, you can plan your day accordingly. It makes you act faster on things too. Say, for example, you want to write a book but don’t know exactly when to start. Reading your horoscope can help you gauge when to get the ball rolling, talk to the right people, and plant the seed.
Semaine: What does the universe have in store for 2018?
Susan: The political landscape of 2017 conservatism will continue to intensify because, this January, there have been six planets in Capricorn, which is the most conservative sign you can get. On the positive flip side, Saturn in Capricorn will help the magazine and broadcasting industries totally recover. Elsewhere, Jupiter and Pluto are pumping up the stock market; it will reach its highest point on September 12, before everything falls down and the banks will have to reinvent themselves completely. The Royal wedding will be interesting too. The whole Royal family are earth and water signs, but Meghan Markle is a fiery Leo. She loves media attention, which is good, but Leos also like their freedom. I hope it works out, but I don’t think she knows what she’s getting into.
Semaine: When having your chart read, there’s the option for a general reading or to ask a specific question. What are the some of most common requests people ask you?
Susan: Between the janitor and the CEO, people all ask me kind of the same thing. When will I have baby? Will I get married? In astrology, if you ask a question, it doesn’t say yes or no like an oracle. You have to piece it together bit-by-bit. If I see something negative in someone’s chart, I try to deliver that news carefully. I think it’s very easy to over-emphasize how serious something could be, so I have to strike the right balance. But I also see it like this: If I have a friend and a bus is coming toward them, I can’t let them get hit.
Semiane: How often do you consult your own chart? Susan: Oh, all the time. I look at my kids’ charts constantly too. For example, one of my daughters is working on a beautiful charitable project with Warby Parker and I helped her with the best dates to call up celebrities and ask if they’d like to be involved. My other daughter is getting married and I advised her to plan for a March wedding because March is the best month we’re going to have all year.
Semaine: How do you deal with astro-sceptics?
Susan: I tell them that we all start out that way and I can sympathize because I was sceptical before I studied it too. The news media teaches us that all astrologers are crackpots and—since the dawn of time—man has been unable to resist making fun of what they don’t understand. They almost can't help themselves, but belittle it. I say; if you’re going to deride my life’s work, at least take a moment to have your chart read, to study it a little bit, and look at a book. Astrology is much more textured and richly interwound than it appears on the surface.
Semaine: You personally write all of the content for AstrologyZone. Do you have any writing rituals?
Susan: My favourite place to work is Dunkin’ Donuts. Everybody makes fun of me, but I love it. Why? First of all, because the counters are low (I’m 5’3”), and they always look out on the street so I have a panoramic view. Also, their coffee is milder than somewhere like Starbucks. I’m not a big coffee drinker at all. One cup a day—that’s it. I typically get there at 11am and stay until I’ve finished one sign. Then I go home and write another. I write around 4,000 words every day. Sometimes it takes me until 2 in the morning.
Semaine: How do you prepare yourself for such a rigorous day of writing?
Susan: I wake up around 6.30am and immediately call the bank. I have ledgers and a big team, so I like to make sure everyone is getting paid on time. I watch the news on CBS while I take my vitamins and put on a face mask. Then I put on a little Vitamin C serum and a moisturizing serum. I weigh myself every morning too. After that, I get down to business.
Semaine: There is a lot of misinformation on the internet. Aside from consulting AstrologyZone, how do you advise people to find reputable sources if they want to learn more about astrology?
Susan: To practice astrology, you should be officially accredited—a process which takes years. That being said, some accredited astrologers are bad because they’re unable to put together the science with the art. If the astrology you read doesn’t work for you, it’s not because astrology doesn’t work period. It’s because a mere mortal wasn’t able to dissect the charts correctly. So look for fully accredited sources—and if you come across someone claiming to be a psychic astrologer, run for the hills immediately.
By Elsa de Berker for Semaine.
Astrology Zone App
My Personal Horoscope
Stelle star-embroidered velvet box clutch
Sleep under the stars
Stepping out of your festive haze, and into the new year, we thought that before we let Susan reveal what's in store for your year, we'd give you a little time to readjust into the swing of 2018. Now you're back at work, back to doing all the things you thought you'd set straight as a resolution, what exactly does your year hold and what tip does Susan Miller have for you as you no doubt pursue new things in this new year?
“You’re going to make more money than you’ve ever seen in your life. Start reading negotiation manuals, books. Because you’ll even double what you bring in. Benefits too... Health insurance vacation days, flex time, whatever you want! If it’s your own company, meet with your banker and he’ll set it up"
“You have the best marriage aspects on the planet..."
"You have the best health outlook for this year."
"You have the most romantic outlook of any sign."
"Real estate, real estate, real estate. This is the year your home becomes your castle, and you won’t want to leave."
"Finally you get the platform to use your communication skills and really make a name for yourself. The gate opens and you’re given the podium and the microphone, how are you going to use it? It just takes one piece of effort and it could be yours."
"Money, you’re finally going to get paid. You’re finally going to be paid what you deserve."
"Everything’s yours. You can have everything you want, so choose wisely, and ofcourse you’re going to be offered a lot so you have to know what you want because you could be like a little child in candy store. Choose what will give you the longest sense of satisfaction and feed your soul."
"You’re getting ready to be crowned the celestial favourite, but you have to eliminate all the things in your life that you don’t like. Your wonderful year starts on November 6th and it lasts until December 2019."
"Last year you had a good career year, but this year is a good year for friendship. It’s not what you know it’s who you know. Widen your group of friends, join a club, it could be professional or social."
"Best career aspects of the whole year."
"The golden nuggets lay with foreign places, foreign people and within publishing and broadcasting and higher education."
Zodiac Signet Gold - Aries
Gemini nail polish
My Personal Horoscope Baby Edition
Orientalist hand balm
The Secret Language of Birthdays
Susan was recently given the award for “Excellence for Connected Daily Lifestyle”, at the Media Excellence Awards in Los Angeles, for her horoscopes on Amazon Echo’s Alexa. Excited by the digital realm, and taking the digital world by storm, Susan's Astrology Zone website and it's adjoining app have huge monthly readerships from all over the world. This does equate to a lot of screen time for Susan, however, which is why she actually prefers to read the physical newspapers over their digital counterparts... This and the fact that as a committed writer for 9 worldwide publications, she is a firm supporter of the print and publishing industries.
Thinking of booking a holiday? Well, this week's travel section is a little different from usual, but it can most definitely help with your holiday selections... Susan Miller, astrologist to the stars (the ones you find in Hollywood), has put together a perfect guide to the world that is specific to you and your starsign.
"Aries like camping and mountains and climbing. Doing something athletic. But it dune ranch in Arizona, where they can do activities and walk in the Desert, and learn things too."
"Taurus needs a spa, they want a sensual experience and they have to be with flowers and greenery and mountains."
"Gemini would go to one city then see another city too, maybe close by. They do things in twos, so maybe they’d do London and Paris - they like to travel by rail. They want to go somewhere trendy that they’ve heard about in a magazine."
"Cancer needs water, we’ll send them to The Hamptons."
"Leo needs to see and be seen, and a lot of culture. The Opera, an art exhibit... They’d go to a big city. New York, Tokyo. Or London for the theatre. Leo’s love theatre."
"Virgos like to do a lot of research, we’ll send them to a unesco heritage site, they like to plan out the days with exactly what they’re doing. If you have a friend that’s a Virgo you’re so lucky."
"Libra would definitely go to the French Riviera, a Libra wants to see friends. They want a more social experience."
"Scorpio needs to be near water, but they want ultimate privacy. They don’t want to run into anyone they know. They might want to go somewhere unusual and off the beaten track, but they need their water to calm themselves. They need rest."
"Sagittarius, they’re like Aries, they want swimming and jet skiing and horseback riding. They might want to go somewhere like monument valley and experience those red rocks."
"Capricorn wants to go to the castles and the Downton Abbey kind of places. Anything with history, and Europe is definitely the place."
"Aquarius needs to see something completely new, I’m going to send them to Austin. Or up to Boston, the MIT area."
"Pisces needs the water. They really need to think. They’re a psychic sponge, they worry about everyone. They like the beach but they love to be with people. They need time to create. Their trips are mainly to fill the reservoir of their inspiration that they will draw on later. They see beauty that other people miss and they can become happy in a location."
To date, Susan has authored 10 books, many of which have graced the shelves of global best seller lists. She mentions that she writes over 4000 words per day, which we can believe, as she is an active contributor to eight top international fashion magazines, including Vogue Japan, China, and Germany, and W Magazine in Korea. Alongside her own publications, this bookshelf outlines her favourite reads.
When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing
A Natural History of the Senses
Human Evolution: Neanderthals & Homosapiens
My Personal Horoscope
Think and Grow Rich!
Think Like a Genius: The Ultimate User's Manual for Your Brain
When she's not looking to the stars, what is Susan Miller watching? We've got your answer right here in this selection.
“WISDOM OF THE CROWD” BY TED HUMPHREY, 2017––
“OUTLANDER” BY RONALD D. MOORE, 2014––
“MADAM SECRETARY” BY BARBARA HALL, 2014––
“DESIGNATED SURVIVOR” BY DAVID GUGGENHEIM, 2016––
Who & A
Who's most likely to? One of the most exciting questions that we all love to keep asking... So, which star sign is most likely to get up to what? Let Susan Miller tell you.
Oh, this year, we’re talking 2018… Gotta be Cancer, but it could be Scorpio too.
Definitely Sagittarius, mind body, spirit. They’re built well, so muscular and strong. There are so many Olympians who are Sagittarius
Could be the Aquarius, they’re very modern and environmental, they don’t like cutting down trees.
Scorpio, but at the end of the year.
Well Gemini’s mind moves so quickly… They may have different resolutions ten days later.
When Scorpio and Virgos get a bee in their bonnet, they’re dedicated to it. Taurus too...
Leo, and a Libra likes to take pictures with friends.
Taurus or Capricorn.